Are You Using a List to Target Consumers?

Are You Using a List to Target Consumers?

You make one for the week, you make one for grocery shopping, you make one for going on vacation, and you even make one for the big guy in red to check over in December, and he does that twice. Lists. They have been around forever and are very helpful for making sure you don’t forget anything, and that you get what you need to get done, done. There is nothing more satisfying for my Type A personality than checking off items on my list. They are also a great tool to have and utilize when it comes to advertising. Digital advertising has always been put up a pedestal because of its ability to get more targeted with consumers, and that is true since you can target by behaviors, location, keywords, or demographics, but it also allows for you to target a list of people that you might have. That list can be a database of previous customers, new customers, or even people that have never heard of your business.

There are several different products where you can use a list to target people:

Just recently, the targeting strategies for Display, Native, Video Pre-Roll, Social Mirror, Social Mirror OTT, OTT, and Online Audio have been upgraded. Along with targeting through Behaviors, Keywords, using Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Retargeting, we can now use Custom Audience Matching and Custom Audience Lookalike for these products. That means that we can take a list of email addresses, physical addresses, or phone numbers, and target those people while they are browsing online and using apps. This is a great opportunity for business owners to get personal with their ad creative based on what kind of list they are targeting. For example, if Valvoline Instant Oil has a list of people who are existing customers that are due for an oil change, they could create an ad that is tailored to that audience and entice them to come in.

If they have a list of potential customers that are not in their database and they are trying to increase their market share, they might choose to purchase a list and offer those people on that list a different incentive with a different ad.

The second part of Custom Audience Matching is doing a Lookalike Audience. This is where we target people that have similar behaviors, characteristics, and interests of those on that initial list. It is ultimately creating a secondary list to target because we are searching for people that are similar to the list they already have. For these products, in order to run Custom Audience Matching by itself, you want to have a starting list of 5,000 email addresses, physical addresses, and/or phone numbers. If you don’t have that many, we will automatically add in the Lookalike Audience.

Another feature of running Custom Audience is that we can provide an Insights Report. This report will provide an overview of the makeup of customers on the list. That can then be used to better understand who your customers are, and even give us the ability to target new customers who look just like your list by using a Lookalike Audience. We can also add in a Behavioral Targeting using information provided from the report to guide you on what categories to target. These reports are five or six pages in length and include information about those matched on your list such as location, age, life stage, ethnicity, political party, household income, charitable contributions, home value, discretionary income, net worth, invested assets, genders present in the household, and number of children.

With Mobile Conquesting, the targeting strategy that uses a list is called Address Targeting and Address Retargeting. With this, we are taking a list of physical addresses and creating mini Geo-Fences around each address and serving ads to mobile devices at that address. If someone leaves that address, we will continue to serve them ads on their mobile device through Address Retargeting.

This is similar to Custom Audience because we are targeting people on a list, but this list is only physical addresses and only mobile devices. One of the perks of this targeting strategy is that with Mobile Conquesting we can also track on-site visits. That means that on the monthly reports, we can show how many people saw the ad and then went to that business within a two-week period. This is a great option for retail businesses, or those that have a lot of foot traffic so that they can see Return on Investment (ROI).

Amazon, LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram also can use Custom Audience Matching and Lookalike, but they don’t provide an Insights Report. The minimum number of entries on the list are also higher:


Minimum List Size- 7,000 with or without Lookalike


Minimum List Size- 10,000 if not running Lookalike, 1,000 with Lookalike


Minimum List Size- 20,000 if not running Lookalike, 1,000 with Lookalike

For all the products that have been listed, we can also provide a Match Back Report. If the business can keep track of who they sold to, who they signed up for a consultation, or who they gave an estimate or quote to each month, we can match that against the list of people that we are serving ads to, so they can again see that ROI. Another example of how digital advertising has also been put up a pedestal compared to other forms of media is because it is more trackable than radio, TV, or billboards. By providing that match back report, the business can see how many customers came from seeing those targeted ads.

One of the most important questions you want to be able to answer as a business owner is “Who is your target audience?” For the longest time, age and demographics were the only targeting options that were available, so that’s what businesses default to with targeting. Instead of saying you want to reach women that are 35-54, figure out what kind of women they are. Are they moms? Grandmothers? Do they work? What are their hobbies? That is going to allow you to go a lot further with your targeting and in turn, create better ad creative. By adding in Custom Audience Matching, that allows you to tailor that message just a little bit further since you can customize it to the type of list you are targeting.

From a business standpoint, there are so many different ways to advertise. On the other side of that, as a consumer, there are also so many ways to be influenced by all the different types of media and advertising we see daily. When you have the right audience and the right message, that’s when you’re going to see success. If you’ve ever seen a reel or a meme and thought to yourself “that’s me!”, that’s how you want your customers and potential customers to feel when they are served your ad, and using a Custom Audience list allows you do that, and it also allows you to get a deeper look into who your customers are with an insights report, see your ROI with a match back report, and the list of benefits goes on…



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